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24 Speed Weekend at William and Mary

April 20, 2009

My old College held their 5th annual 24 Speed (24 Hour) filmmaking contest this past weekend. On Friday February 20th, 12 teams received their genre, line of dialogue, and a prop. By 6pm the next day, 6 teams turned in a video on time, 3 turned in a video after the 6pm deadline, 2 did not turn in a film, and one giant idiot did not understand that the contest was 24 hours. The 9 completed films were then screened at 5pm the following Sunday. I figured what better time to visit the school then during a film competition (after all, I had been a participant myself for 3 years ’04-’07 helping to organize the first one, and even came up with the 24 speed name).

I also contacted a few alumni to see if I could also get them to come back for the event, and was fortunate enough to get my buddies Gustav from L.A. and Kevin from New York to come down. I even setup a little talk about the film production business, where they each discussed their respective cities.

(L-R) Me, Gustav '07, Kevin Williams '07, and Jeremy Hinrichs '08

(L-R) Me, Gustav '07, Kevin Williams '07, and Jeremy Hinrichs '08

Only about 5 or 6 people were in the audience (not including myself and my buddy Jeremy), but it was still fun, and the few people who did show up appreciated it. I had aspirations of creating a “just for fun” alumni team for the 24 Speed event, but that of course, did not pan out to well. We were all happy to see each other, so instead spent the night of the competition drinking at the Leafe (the College’s main bar). However, I did manage to throw together a short movie with my friend Jeremy in the few hours before the competition deadline. The joke genre we received was called Steampunk, which is basically the category that Bladerunner falls into, or so I am told. Regardless, the product that resulted can be viewed below:

The weekend also afforded me the chance to meet with Nathaniel Kahn, a two time Oscar nominated documentary maker. He was nominated for his films My Architect and Two Hands: The Leon Fleisher story. A small lunch was setup with Nathaniel Kahn consisting of about 5-6 people. We all got to personally share our own stories with Kahn and received very pertinent and useful advice. It was really cool to meet Nathaniel Kahn and I definitely appreciated the interest he showed and willingness to give advice to us all.

Later that weekend, I also got to judge the films in the 24 Speed contest. The previous year I was an official judge, and had setup an editing award called the “Xanadu Editing Ignited Award.” This year, I thought that I was just going to help pick the Editing award, and nothing more; however, another judge canceled, and since I was hanging around, I got to be an official judge a second time. Nathaniel Kahn was the Special Guest Judge this year, so I got the pleasure of discussing and judging the films with him. Now, this is really cool because Kahn is a member of the Academy board and so he also votes for the films that get nominated for the Oscars.

The final screening of the films was 5pm that Sunday night. The film that I liked the most was made by Rifthead Productions. The teamleader Ted Hogeman is a friend of mine and makes alot of films. Here is his youtube channel: Rifthead01. Ted’s film Shadows of Shadows won the Xanadua Editing Ignited Award, the Excellence in Sound Award, and the Audience Award.

The rest of the films can be viewed here: 24 Speed 2009 Films

(Originally posted February 25th, 2009)

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